No word whether Spirit, True North are in negotiations

It is unclear this morning if the Thrashers have been granted  permission by the NHL to begin negotiations with True North Sports and Entertainment, the entity that would purchase the franchise and move it to Winnipeg, or if those talks have already begun.

However, it does appear the situation is headed in that direction. All attempts to find a buyer with the intention – and wherewithal – to keep the franchise in Atlanta have not moved past the preliminary stage. After signing a non-disclosure agreement for an initial look at team financial records, a prospective buyer must provide proof of the financial assets to complete a sale. No interested party has done so to this point. Time is running out.

As I was told and reported this week, things could move quickly in regard to a sale and relocation. Although, contrary to reports, it won’t get done by this weekend.

There is also no timetable on the possible completion of a deal with True North. It is also not known if such an agreement could be reached in time for next season. The structure for a deal could be in place as True North had first hoped to acquire the Phoenix Coyotes, owned by the NHL, until a resolution was reached to kept the team in Arizona for another season earlier this week. The Glendale City Council voted to pay $25 million to the NHL for operating expenses to keep the team at least for next season.

NHL bylaws require that an owner seeking to relocate a team submit a written application to the commissioner by Jan. 1 of the year preceding the proposed move — “unless a majority of the [clubs] consents to a later filing date.” That clause and caveat leave open the question of whether a move, if a deal is reached, would be for the 2011-12 or 2012-13 season.

NHL commissioner Gary Bettman, speaking on NHL Live radio Thursday, said the situation in Phoenix differs from Atlanta.

“With respect to any other franchise, it comes down to ownership,” Bettman said. “It’s the reason we ended up leaving Quebec City and Winnipeg. Those teams moved when nobody wanted to own the club there anymore. If you get to that position, where somebody is not prepared to own the club anymore and you can’t find a new perspective purchaser, then you are really between a rock and a hard place.

“We know that the current ownership of the Thrashers has been trying for a long period of time to try and sell the franchise and they haven’t been able to do it. … If they can’t find local ownership, then we might all have to deal with that. But I know they have tried very hard and I assume that they continue to try very hard.”

Bettman echoed deputy commissioner Bill Daly’s statements to the AJC’s Jeff Schultz earlier in the day and would not guarantee that the Thrashers would be in Atlanta next season. Bettman said questions about the team’s future were not his to answer and referred them to team ownership.

393 comments Add your comment

True Thrashers Fan

May 15th, 2011
11:35 pm

I call for a rally soon!

VAN ISLE

May 15th, 2011
11:56 pm

G52PIM228

May 15th, 2011
11:58 pm

Man you Atlantans are so stupid. Get your city to pay the NHL money to buy time like we are doing in Glendale.

G52PIM228

May 16th, 2011
12:00 am

How cute, an impostor.. Guys wanna be me, chicks wanna be with me..

G52PIM228

May 16th, 2011
12:10 am

It would seem loserpeg is a little jealous a town a 1/3rd the size can afford to keep their NHL team when loserpeg could not..

G52PIM228

May 16th, 2011
12:21 am

Nobody went to the loserpeg jokes games, but EVERYBODY went to the rally to wave good-bye..

That’s a cold shot..

Atlanta Spirit Sucks

May 16th, 2011
12:57 am

If you are seeking the truth about the Atlanta Spirit, the owners for the Hawks and Thrashers, proceed to the link listed below. The Spirit only care about one thing, and it isn’t the quality of the product, be it the Arena, the Thrashers, or the Hawks. Watch the history unfold before your eyes with more info being added day after day.

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Atlanta-Georgia/Atlanta-Spirit-Sucks/114671988618038

Global View

May 16th, 2011
2:49 am

Dear Atlanta…

Please don’t be swayed by the mindless babble the Snow Monkeys toss your way, for they are only products of there environment.

Here’s a find example of what constitutes hard hitting journalism in their local rag:

From the Winnipeg Free Press

Do you compost?
* Yes 37%
* Not yet but I’m thinking about it. 11%
* I would but I don’t have a suitable yard. 18%
* No. I’m not interested. 32%

Total Votes: 4079

Keep this in mind when they lecture you on the complexities of owning an NHL hockey team, economics, fan base, etc.
Their posts suggest you are beholden to embrace their empirical observations sans questioning…
just reply accordingly:

I would, but I don’t have a suitable yard.

Go THRASHERS !

ScottBravesfan

May 16th, 2011
3:49 am

I don’t really care about the NHL but I do care about the sport of hockey. And with the Thrashers moving to Canada it’s going to hurt the game of hockey here in metro Atlanta. Youth hockey has really started to take off the last few years and it’s a shame that the city will lose their hockey team. Could really stunt the growth of the game here.

TheLegend

May 16th, 2011
4:40 am

wpgJetsfan wrote…..
————————————————————-
“wow AZ trolls are now Telling Atlantans what to do. That’s just EPIC funny. They can’t even support their own NHL team and have to get the city to waste taxpayers money. Mind you most people who want the Coyotes to stay are not even from Glendale. Many of their meetings proved that.

In business, it’s always the LOCALS who keep the business afloat in the bad times. These fair weather AZ fans will sink the attendance when the team does crap. And who will be on the hook? Glendale Residents.

You never bank your potential from non-locals. It’s always a losing proprosition. I can honestly say Atlanta has done far better than Glendale has ever done to this point.”
———————————————————————-

First… I must apologize for the lengthy post. But I just wanted to enlighten the Thrashers fans about the character of person who I quoted above. Because he is a prime example as to why some of us in Phoenix are coming off a bit hostile. This is not to excuse some of the examples of their behavior I’ve seen so far on this site, but some perspective is in order here.

This individual who’s post I quoted above spent roughly 8-9 months on azcentral.com carpet bombing the discussion threads DAILY….. with posts amounting to nothing but “Coyotes are gone. The countdown clock continues…..” including a link to some website that shows said clock in action. Whether it be a game article… or one about the business with the franchise… didn’t matter.. He was never provoked into this behavior by Yotes fans but his intention to troll the site from the first day he showed up (along with a few other “Jets fans” around the same time) was perfectly clear. So I do find it quite humorous when the “Peg fans talk about how bad the azcentral site is when they are directly responsible for helping create that atmosphere to begin with.

Also note that before wpgJetsfan (and his kind) decided to grace azcentral.com with their presence, Yotes fans had already been subjected to continuous trolling from fans originating out of the MakeItSeven campaign for nearly a year. And I reckon we’ll be seeing the Quebec fans showing up on azcentral.com in the near future (the ‘Peg fans have graciously informed us of this already).

Does it mean all the Winnipeg fans are bad? Nope…. I noticed rdrunner is on this site and he’s one of many who would rather discuss this issues than sling mud at anyone.

FWIW…. I sincerely hope that the Thrashers will remain in Atlanta for many years to come. If I had any advice to offer its fans… it would be to not get seriously worked up over every tweet you see, or what some reporter or blogger citing what “people close to the situation” said.

Until the NHL says otherwise…. they are still the Atlanta Thrashers.

TheLegend

May 16th, 2011
4:47 am

Also….. one more thing Thrashers fans should consider. ajc.com’s open messaging system allows people to impersonate other active by simply putting their name in the proper field.

Please keep that in mind when it appears someone seems to be making conflicting comments.

TheLegend

May 16th, 2011
7:23 am

Oh and another thing, Coyotes Rule and Thrashers suck.

TheLegend

May 16th, 2011
7:41 am

One last thing, Thrashers should stay put as playoffs are near next year.

TheLegend

May 16th, 2011
7:45 am

This is it, Winnipeg should start a Russian league team. Yotes could play an exhibition there.

Michael

May 16th, 2011
8:00 am

Re: Global View

Thanks Global, take that over a dog fighting culture anyway. Dog fighting gets better ratings than hockey in Atlanta. Better for your kids too.

wpgJetsfan

May 16th, 2011
8:15 am

Atlanta fans, I wouldn’t listen to G52PIM228, TheLegends, Global, AYF. They troll every hockey board site from HFBOARDS, to Globle and Mail, to TSN, to Winnipeg Free Press. They all have a hidden agenda.

Btw, G52PIM228 is banned on the HFboards for reasons displayed here in these boards.

One thing is certain if the team does relocate to Winnipeg, they will mock you fans.

ATLThrashersfan

May 16th, 2011
8:39 am

Enough already Coyotes fans. Get off our boards already. We don’t need to hear your garbage about Winnipeg. We don’t even care. The issue is about our team. Go find yourself an owner.

j

May 16th, 2011
8:52 am

LOL at BS … you’re numbers are really retarded. 12,000 tickets at $50? Seriously? You thinkw e have that amny people coming to the games paying $50 per person? You must forget we have the lowest attendance in the league and most people buying are paying for the cheap seats ($10 – $20 per ticket). Also, you forget about all the COMPS out there. The Hawks are the same way, and their money only comes from big games. I can almost 100% tell you they lost money this year. Assuming really does make an ass out of just you.

too many on the ICE

May 16th, 2011
9:08 am

Anyone have a legit update (i.e. not some Canada media outlet)?

Anders Hedberg

May 16th, 2011
9:11 am

@Global View. Go find work. Your barely above depression economy needs you.

Fraserwoodflyer

May 16th, 2011
9:12 am

Haha Global, Is that the best you can sling at Winnipeg? Sad that you are so insecure, inferior, and uncomfortable with your present situation that you make these desperate attempts. They do make us chuckle here in the GREAT white north. Thanks though for spending so much of your day thinking about us, sorry to say we don’t do the same for you. Just too much else to enjoy. Looking forward to further desperate attempts for a laugh, people always “hate” when you are at the top. Comes with the territory.

Anyways back on topic, sad if Atlanta does lose their team, and I hope if Winnipeg does land them Jets fans do so respectfully and with the sensitivity that our gain was another’s loss. We are speaking from experience after all.

Kelly

May 16th, 2011
9:13 am

It’s sad to see city-bashing, either against Glendale, Atlanta or Winnipeg. Losing your team sucks, yes, but Winnipeg didn’t shrivel up and die when the Jets left. Indeed, Winnipeg is experiencing the largest net inmigration of any Canadian city. Trolls who call it Frozen Crap Hole or Loserpeg have no class and no idea about what they are talking about.

And it’s not Winnipeg’s fault that the Coyotes or the Thrashers are in difficulty nor that neither team has found anyone willing to spend their own money to buy them. It’s also not Winnipeg’s fault that we have two guys ready to open their own checkbooks and buy a team with their own money.

Alan R.

May 16th, 2011
9:19 am

Trolls who call it Frozen Crap Hole or Loserpeg have no class and no idea about what they are talking about.

Look no further than some of the citizens of that city. I know quite a few that readily acknowledge the place is a “crap hole.” I, personally, think it’s a beautiful town full of generally nice people. The trolls we’re experiencing here are the exception, not the rule.

However, they can keep their mitts off my hockey team.

Brian

May 16th, 2011
9:42 am

I have the unique “pleasure of being both a life-long Thrasher and Coyotes fan…. I can tell you right now, ive been to both rinks on an average night against average teams, and Atlanta actually draws better attendence. their are die-hard, dedicated fans in both cities, but Atlanta tends to have a few thousand more show up at game-time. its a real shame that due to cronic mismanagment, a city with a respectable hockey interest will lose its team. I feel most for the young fans, because they never got to feel playoff fever, the all star game, an 8-3 trouncing of the senators in 2006 that soldified my fandom. its a loss for the generations to come, as without the thrashers, interest in youth hockey and their programs will be threatened as less people are introduced to the game of hockey through the nhl.

Brian

May 16th, 2011
9:45 am

Also, wheres the investigative journalism in all this AJC?! if this was montreal they would have bugged ASG’s phones by now. Atlanta deserves to know whats going on, as we have invested in this enterprise since its inception. AJC hit me up for a job opportunity, im 20 but at least i wouldnt eat ASG’s “offical statements” like candy…

too many on the ICE

May 16th, 2011
9:48 am

Here on out I will refer to Winnipeg as a Frozen Crap Hole.

Fraserwoodflyer

May 16th, 2011
10:16 am

Alan R. you can go to ANY city and find people that call it a “crap hole”. There are bitter, “half-empty”, people that choose to sit in their basements as opposed to get out and enjoy what any city has to offer. Pay no attention to it, I can live in Atlanta, Phoenix, or Winnipeg and enjoy the people, the environment, the history, etc.. If the team was considering moving to Hamilton, KC, Houston or whatever we would have people bashing those towns.

SportsFan

May 16th, 2011
10:20 am

Makes you wonder why the AZ folks waste their time on here when they can actually use it on their own team. Not that they have much of one…NHL owner for another season = last place.

chaz

May 16th, 2011
10:28 am

This site used to be a good read, now its just as bad as phoenix’s. Brutal. G52 ruins another good thing. So much for discussions, lets just get straight to insults about places we have never been, or people we have never met. Hi. Im called respect, have we met?

Fraserwoodflyer

May 16th, 2011
10:34 am

Well put Chaz!!!

SportsFan

May 16th, 2011
10:50 am

Respect and G52 are not something in common. Just an AZ troll who hides behind his computer in mom’s basement with boyfriend Global View.

Shameus

May 16th, 2011
1:13 pm

Don’t PM me. I will PM you….from Winnipeg.

j

May 16th, 2011
1:54 pm

hey, Balkan, your facts are horrible. This team averaged over 15,500 per game back when the owners were making an effort to put a team on the ice (0506,0607). That all changed in the past two years and thus, fans stopped coming. Even with the Thrashers winning, attendance did pick up again BUT there are still A LOT of fans out there that won’t come back until this ownership is gone. You obviously don’t know any off these facts b/c you don’t attend games here. Get the F off this blog before i make a trip down to your basement.

Michael

May 16th, 2011
2:44 pm

@j

Good one j, who cares, back in the good ol days o506 0607 is when the team started losing money and the owners started to try and sell their dog, but the NHL wouldn’t let them sell to anyone who wanted to move the team. So in 5 freakin years you haven’t had one rich idiot step forward willing to lose money on your crap team.

With good attendance they lost money. With worse attendance they lose more money. Bottom line is all they do is lose money. If hockey is so god damned great in Atlanta why are the owners so desperately trying to sell?

Sandbagger

May 16th, 2011
3:08 pm

There are more people living in Atlanta in poverty on food stamps than there are total people in Winnipeg. What’s the ghetto population of Craplanta? 1 or 2 million? Are those people counted in the ‘Atlanta hockey market’? I guess if you give the tickets away to them – but then they’d just scalp them for a hit of crack, if they could get it. Man its going to hurt to lose all those potential hockey fans!!

bikerborz

May 16th, 2011
3:22 pm

If the Thrashers DO leave Atlanta, then that will be the second NHL team to have left there… does anybody remember where the Calgary Flames came from?

[...] Friday, Chris Vivlamore of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported that“It is unclear this morning if the Thrashers have been granted  permission by the NHL to [...]

Michael

May 16th, 2011
5:21 pm

Give it up Chris- as if at this point they don’t have permission. Try to contribute something here for chrissakes. Don’t be so damn naive, regardless of what some idiot reporter says.

OHL

May 16th, 2011
6:15 pm

@Keep Hockey in Atlanta in 2 of the last 3 years Cleveland and Buffalo beat out the Falcons in attendance. The exception was last year and you have a franchise top pick QB, the 2 small market teams haven’t been to the playoffs this decade. With the great year you had you are only 1 or 2 spots away from being in the bottom half of the league. I don’t have a horse in this race but I can see the facts.

@G52loserR2D2inmateGEEK

May 16th, 2011
9:39 pm

Owners schmowners, Playoffs schmayoffs, attendance schmatendance. We want an NHL team and are willing to pay for it. 400 people want a team in Atlanta and nobody is willing to pay for it. Get over it. Go to a Hawks or Braves game and watch them lose.

Even you have to admit that high school football in Georgia has more fans than hockey. Careful, our dollar keeps going up and we may move the Hawks up here.

Global View

May 17th, 2011
1:06 am

Don’t give up Atlanta…

These canadian Snow Monkeys will try to beat you down into submission.
Just laugh in their faces.

I spent two weeks each of the past two years in Atlanta for the CEDIA tradeshow @ GWCC.
Every pre-season game you had I paid to see your Thrashers.
Your fans were totally into the team and the team responded accordingly.

With the arena being downtown and in the proximity of the Georgia Dome, CNN Center, the Omni, and being on a MARTA stop I found access to be convenient and easy to facilitate.
I do see that folks North in Marietta and Buckhead may not see it that way, don’t let that hamper your enthusiasm.

[...] relocation. The Atlanta Thrashers could be a latest plant as True North Sports and Entertainment want to squeeze and resettle a authorization in Winnipeg, Canada…….Read the Full Article at: [...]

[...] relocation. The Atlanta Thrashers could be a latest plant as True North Sports and Entertainment want to squeeze and resettle a authorization in Winnipeg, Canada…….Read the Full Article at: [...]